The Nintendo 3DS seems to finally have gained some stable footing in the Land of the Rising Sun as the system has seen steady growth and strong sales for several months. Media Create, a Japanese gaming hardware and software sales statistics group, has released the sales results for the week of October 17th through October 23rd in Japan. In the timespan, the Nintendo 3DS enjoyed sales numbers nearly three times stronger than the closest competition, the PlayStation 3.

Here's the full chart, courtesy of Media Create:

3DS 73,933
PS3 23,897
PSP 22,095
Wii 11,235
DSi LL 2,005
Xbox 360 1,620
PS2 1,296
DSi 1,293
DS Lite 36

In previous weeks, the Nintendo 3DS was sitting at roughly 50,000 units sold. There has been a bit of fluctuation from that point, but the handheld has stuck within that range ever since its price cut back on August 11th (August 12th for the rest of the world).

What I can't account for is the more than 20k jump in sales for the portable that came during the reported week. There were no massive software releases that would lead to a surge in sales, and it's not like there's a Japanese holiday occupying relevant calendar space. It's as if, collectively, 20,000 extra people decided it was time to snag a Nintendo 3DS.

The system will be enjoying banner releases in a matter of weeks, so I do expect sales to jump around the launches of Super Mario 3D Land and Mario Kart 7; but, right now? Maybe an A-list celebrity in Japan starred in a 3DS commercial.

While this chart does indicate strong system movement in Japan, it obviously does not give us any inclination regarding hardware sales on an internationally level. Growth for the Nintendo 3DS in Japan will not necessarily translate to worldwide success. It is, however, good that Nintendo is enjoying at least some level of banner sales.

[via Media Create]

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